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Help Foster Dog Lili with Medical Expenses
$120 raised
1% of $10k goal
5 contributors
4 Years running
Lili, a 2 year old pitbull mix, is a bit of a medical mystery. She has lesions that don't heal, and an army of vets hasn't been able to tell us why. In her weakened state, she tore an achilles tendon, so she has had two surgeries. More are ...

Lili, a 2 year old pitbull mix (our foster dog), is a bit of a medical mystery. She has lesions that don't heal, and an army of vets hasn't been able to tell us why. In her weakened state, she tore an achilles tendon, so she has had two surgeries. More are expected. Treatment for vasculitis seems to be helping. She is a kind and gentle soul, and we want to continue to help her, but we need your help!

It's hard to know where to begin with Lili's story. Lili came to New England from Florida, where she was rescued from a high kill shelter. When we got her, she was recovering from mange and an eye infection. By the time she was adopted, she appeared healthy.

In February, the new owner contacted me, asking for help. Lili had torn the pads off all four paws, and had started medication to strengthen her sphincter because she would urinate on herself, even while sleeping. The owner was overwhelmed by the cost and time involved in caring for Lili. She asked for some temporary help until Lili's paws healed. We could hardly say no.

We took over caring for Lili at the end of February. She had to wear booties on all four feet whenever she went outside. But her paws wouldn't heal. She had already had autoimmune tests, which came back normal. Our vet ran more tests. Nothing. After a few months, Lili developed lesions on her heels, then on her hocks, tail, and read end. They got progressively worse. So the vet did a biopsy and fungal culture. Normal. The vet was stumped, so we tried a new vet. More biopsies: deep tissue and bone (the first had been superficial). Again, the results told us nothing. Lili saw a dermatologist. It was thought it might be a rare fungal infection that Lili had picked up in Florida, so specialists were consulted. Another culture. Another negative. Meanwhile, Lili was living in bandages on both back legs, which had to be changed twice daily. Her paws had mostly healed, though. She hadn't been for a walk in 7 months.

The owner planned to take Lili back in June, but at the last minute she decided that, with so much uncertainty with Lili's health, she just couldn't do it. We tried to find a rescue to take Lili on, but couldn't. The owner signed Lili over to us.

Several weeks ago, one of my kids left the back door open. Lili likes to sit on the deck and sunbathe, which is fine while someone is watching her. But I just happened to be moving our horses by the house. Lili followed our dog and chased the horses. She made a sudden turn to avoid a kick, and tore the achilles tendon off the bone in one of her back legs. It didn't take much, because her tissue was already weakened from the lesions. She has had two surgeries to attempt to repair the tendon, but it is dying. Lili now has a fixator on her leg, which involves screws and a metal plate. She has to go in to the vet for daily bandage changes on both back legs and an antibiotic injection. If we can get the wound healed, the vet would like to fuse the ankle bones since the tendon will never heal now. If that doesn't work, she will lose the leg. Dogs get along fine on three legs; we have a 3-legged cat already; that isn't an issue. The problem is if the lesion on the other leg doesn't heal. We need to try to save this leg.

Lili's two recent surgeries cost over $7,000. We know she will need at least one more, either to fuse the joint or amputate the leg. The vet also wants to try an experimental treatment on the lesion on the other leg. They understand Lili's situation, and are helping us out with the cost as much as possible. But it is pretty overwhelming, especially since we have two dogs of our own (both seniors), as well as three cats and two horses to look after.

My parents keep asking why we don't give up on Lili, when there are so many other dogs we could be helping with the money we spend on her. While there is truth to that, we just couldn't do it with a clear conscious. Lili is one of the sweetest souls I have ever encountered. Everyone who meets her comments on her personality. Lili has never met a person or dog she didn't love. She is an absolutely perfect ambassador for her breed. She has, in fact, completely changed my mom's opinion of pit bulls. One of Lili's most endearing qualities is that she is extremely empathic. If someone is sad or upset, she is right there cuddling and kissing them. She has been an absolute champ throughout her ordeal. She even falls asleep, snoring, while we clean her wounds and change her bandages. She is amenable to everything. Now that Lili has a fixator on her leg (and some nasty bacteria in her wound), she can no longer cuddle on the sofa with us, which just kills us all.

We would love to continue to care for Lili; to see her through this hellish ordeal and into a loving forever home. She is only two years old, and no dog is more deserving of a happily ever after. But the vet bills are piling up, and there are more to come. I can't bear to think of what we would do if one of our dogs/cats/horses or kids got hurt or sick in the middle of this! We humbly ask for your help. We will absorb half of the costs we have already incurred. Will you please help with the other half? If you would rather donate directly to our vet, you can contact them (Newtown Veterinary Specialists) at 203-270-8387. Tell them it is for Lili Killin.

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